How to Remove Rust Stains From Tub

Although this is not our area of expertise, we thought we'd pass on this information that was tested by our employees. They are always talking about their own home repairs and we thought this was an interesting topic and solution.

Rust in the bathroom is usually the result of two related situations. Either iron-containing metals in your bathroom fixtures have begun to rust OR your mineral-rich water supply contains iron particles and has begun to stain areas where water runs. This happens even with a porcelain tub as two of our employees found out.

Bleach and Tilex made the rust stains worse and they sparked another chemical reaction, creating more rust stains on the non-skid surface on the tub floor. Other products that either made things worse or didn't work at all: Lysol, toilet bowl cleansers, Soft Scrub, Goof Off, Awesome, Comet, Simple Green, Mean Green, Magic Eraser and CLR,

However, we found 2 things that really worked: Clorox2 and Hydrogen Peroxide. The Clorox2 worked best and required less scrubbing. Just pour either product on the stain and let it sit. Then scour gently with a damp sponge and rinse. If the stains are really bad you may have to repeat the process twice.

  • If this is a recurring problem and the staining is chronic, there may be no way to remove the stain as it may have etched itself into the porcelain.
  • Most staining is not that bad and can be successfully removed if you know how but regular toilet bowl cleaners or powdered chlorine based cleansers will not solve this problem.
  • Ellie Malone Kazik
    I got whink rush stain remover came right out. Doesn't take your breathe away either. You can get this cleaner from Menard's. Really good product.
  • Nancy Jenkins
    I tried all your suggestions, might not be rust. This house was a drug house and it could have been residue from drugs sold ilegally out of this house before I bought it 11 years ago. Might have to get a professional in to resurface. I love my claw tub.
    • Angelrose55
      Nancy Jenkins Just try a 2 litter of coke and a rag to keep washing it over and over. The rust will disappear for sure and no fumes either.
  • Darrel Rose
    Darrel Rose Rosamond, CA
    Use BarKeepers Friend cleaner works on rust do not use with any other cleaner when using this as the Oxalic acid will create fumes
    • Judy H.
      Judy H. Columbia, MO
      Darrel Rose I used bar keepers friend on an old porcelain sink and it took the sheen and finish off of the porcelain.
  • Angelrose55
    Just use Coke soda it takes the rust away. My brother had a truck and the bummer was really rusted. A friend told him to use a 2 liter of coke and continue to pour it on while rubbing the rust away. (looked like it was brand new) If coke does this what
  • Judy H.
    Judy H. Columbia, MO
    I have read than Clorox and/or Tilex can damage the surface of porcelain. Is this true?
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